Seen from above, inside the V-shape formed by the linear leaflets, the young leaves of Encephalartos friderici-guilielmi display their bluish colour. The leaf veins are not seen on the upper surfaces. The yellowish colouring upon the leaflet tips is already present. The leaflet margins, entire and overlapping, still have the occasional signs of hairiness.
The leaf rachis is white from its woolly covering. This gives the species its Afrikaans common name of withaarbroodboom (white hair cycad) (Hugo, 2014; Coates Palgrave, 2002).